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The Legal Age for Cosmetic Surgery

Unlike surgery or medical treatment that is offered to resolve medical issues like back pain for example by professionals like Townosteo, a Leicester osteopath, cosmetic surgery is generally elective. This means that people are freely choosing to commit to altering their bodies in some way, whether to enhance their appearance, resolve an issue affecting their confidence or to create a new silhouette. The fact that there is a free choice, however, means that some people are concerned that younger people are putting themselves under the knife for the wrong reasons.

The Legal Age for Cosmetic Surgery

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Katie Price

Renowned glamour model and celebrity Katie Price has recently been in the news saying that she believes the age of consent for cosmetic surgery should be raised from 18 to 21 in the UK. She is part of a growing number of people asking whether 18-year-olds are mature enough to understand the risks and consequences of such invasive surgeries as breast implants.

Equally importantly, at 18 years old, many young women are very susceptible to pressure from the media and their peers and may in fact be chasing after an unattainable dream of perfection for their bodies. On the cusp of adulthood, there are fears and insecurities which can plague people at this point in their lives, leading them to turn to surgery as the cure. Katie Price thinks that this pressure is part of why so many younger patients are attending consultations and having breast enlargements or other surgeries.

Recommended Ages

Reputable companies acknowledge that there are optimum times for people to undergo specific procedures. For instance, according to Dr Allen from the Woodford Medical Clinic, most people should not require Botox until after the age of 35. This is because it is most effective at combating permanent wrinkles which remain whilst the face is resting, which people don’t generally develop until they are between 30 and 40.

She also says that the optimum age for a face lift is around 45, when the skin is still elastic enough to recover from the operation. This is contrary to the reality that most women go for consultations for this between 50 and 60, when it might be too late to recover their looks. A non surgical facelift is also an option available.

On the other hand, Dr Allen suggests that for a rhinoplasty or nose-reshaping surgery, there is no age limit. Although she will not perform the surgery on those whose bones are still developing, her guideline is that this generally happens at 18 in women and 19 in men. Therefore this is a surgery which can be performed on younger patients to correct the shape of their nose at a time when their skin will easily adapt and when it will give them many years of new-found self-confidence.

Her guidelines, which were reported in the news, also suggest that 25 might be the optimum age for a breast augmentation, putting this in line with Katie Price’s idea that the current minimum age might need to be changed.


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